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Earlier this year, I picked up a 6.5 Grendel upper receiver. I had a completed poly lower receiver sitting in the safe and so decided to use it with my new Grendel upper. While the two fit very well together, the mil-spec trigger was simply not doing any justice to the cartridge's accuracy potential. While I was getting sub-MOA groups at 100 yds, I was certain that I could improve my performance with a better trigger. Hey, it sounds good, right?
It was a Saturday and Gary (a shooting buddy) and I stopped by one of the local gun stores, Shooter's Vault. While there, I was speaking with one of the employees I've chatted with on prior visits and asked if they carried any AR triggers. He responded that they carried a drop in trigger unit made by a local Phoenix area company, Battle Tested Equipment. They had a partial AR-15 lower on display with the BTE trigger installed. When given the opportunity to give it a try, I happily accepted.
It was a nice....very, very nice single stage trigger. The manufacturer's spec indicate a 3.5 pound pull with no user adjustments. Regardless of lack of user adjustment, it was perfect just like it was. Gary tried it a few times and agreed that it was a good one. There was no take up.....just a nice crisp break after applying pressure to the trigger.
If one is not familiar with removing and installing the AR-15 trigger, BTE has an easy to follow page of instructions on their web site. Since they use a trigger assembly versus the individual pieces found in a regular AR-15 fire control group, the instructions are necessary. They do not include anything in the retail package, which I found surprising. I guess they assume every AR-15 owner has internet access. It would cost them a single piece of paper to include the instructions. You can see the trigger assembly in the above photo, next to their supplied hex wrench. The little plastic bag includes a couple of set screws and a pair of pins (more on that later) that come with your purchase.
To install the BTE trigger, you need to remove your existing trigger, disconnect, and sear along with the safety/selector lever. You will need to remove the grip in order to get the safety lever out. Be careful not to lose the safety spring and plunger when you take off the grip.
In the above photo, the trigger assembly has been placed into the receiver and the two pins (hammer and trigger) have been installed. To keep the pins from sliding out, the BTE trigger uses a pair of "trigger lock screws" that are accessed through the top of the assembly (the two circled areas in the above photo). The long hex wrench that was included is used to tighten these two screws. BTE supplies two more screws (much shorter) that are subsequently screwed into the assembly to lock the other screws in position.
When I was fitting the assembly into my poly receiver, I discovered two things. First, the trigger itself was about .060" too long and so was hitting the trigger guard while trying to align the assembly in order to insert the trigger and hammer pins through the receiver. I attributed that to the fact that my poly receiver is probably not mil-spec. I resolved that problem by carefully removing a small about of the trigger and then bluing the exposed tool steel with some cold blue solution.
The second thing I discovered was when reading an e-mail response I received from BTE's customer support the next day. In it, they indicated they had a different trigger assembly for poly receivers. Since I was local, they invited me to stop by their office and they would gladly exchange it for me. While that was great customer service, I have to ask why that information was not contained in their installation instructions nor was it indicated on the trigger's retail packaging. I looked on their web site, in the product section, and the mention of a poly friendly version is not indicated. Really? Why have it and not tell your customers up front? Coming across the information via an e-mail exchange is a poor way to discover this information. Since I already had mine installed, I opted to forgo the exchange, thank you BTE. It works as is and if I want to switch to an aluminum receiver for my 6.5 Grendel, I'll have the correct trigger assembly for it.
I recycled the anti-walk pins I was using in the lower receiver. They do a great job of keeping the trigger and hammer pins from moving around. Their only draw back is that a hex wrench is required to remove the pins from the receiver.
I was able to squeeze in a trip to the range to try out the new trigger. It was still just as good as it was at the Shooter's Vault store. I was able to concentrate more on my breathing and follow through rather than worrying about losing the sight picture due to how heavy the old trigger was. Trigger control was no longer an issue....it was much easier and was much more in line with my .308 precision rifle.
Here is one of the loads I was testing out this morning. Wouldn't you know it....it was my last shot (#5) that ended up out there by itself. LOL! The other four were under a half inch. Oh well, I guess I got a little more practicing (and load work up) left to do.
Check out the BTE AR Match Trigger. I do believe you will
be very pleased with the performance. And with the price being less than
two bills (including tax), I was really satisfied with the price point too.